Sony SBH50 Bluetooth Headset Review
Given the good sales of their Xperia line of products, Sony is going all-out with their accessories and peripherals. Sony was actually one of the first companies to ship a “smart watch” with the Sony Live Watch. It’s not the ideal smart watch but it was proof that Sony was trying their best to be innovative and they had the balls and the resources to ship their products to market. One of the more interesting accessories they’re offering is the Sony SBH50 Bluetooth Headset. We’ve been using it for the last three-four days and we’d like to share with you guys our review.
Before anything you might want to watch the official promotional video about this accessory. It will give you a better idea of what it can do and how you can actually use it.
Hardware: Clip-on Console with Audio Jack
The SBH50 basically is a clip-on device that connects to your Xperia smartphone via Bluetooth/NFC and then shows several selected content on your smartphone on it’s LED display. You can actually check your latest e-mails, calendar events, and text messages on it but the screen is too small for efficient reading so it’s more of a notification device. Other than that you can also stream your music via Bluetooth. The SBH50 has an audio jack so you can just plug-in your preferred earphones or headphones (or use the one that comes in the box). There’s also a built-in FM Radio in the SBH50 so listening to your favorite FM station won’t be a problem.
Using the SBH50 was actually easy after downloading all the apps and updates needed for it to work out of the box. After the first pairing via Bluetooth with our Xperia ZR, all we had to do to connect it again afterwards is to just hold both devices close together and NFC will automatically connect both of them via Bluetooth.
After connecting via Bluetooth the SBH50 functioned like a remote control, music player, and notification device. We just clipped it on our shirt using the built-in clip and just looked at it every now and then when we would get notifications for either SMS, e-mails, or calendar alerts. During downtimes or work mode we’d use it to play the music that’s stored in the Xperia ZR. We swapped out the default earphones though with something better.
When it comes to music quality, there are compromises with the output due to it being Bluetooth. That’s always been the issue with wireless players but that’s a small price to pay for some people who prefer the convenience of wireless connectivity.
Over-all the Sony SBH50 is a fascinating and cool accessory for your Xperia smartphone. It should work with any of the Xperia line-up of products including the Xperia Z, Xperia Z Ultra, Xperia Tablet Z, etc. It’s not perfect yet mind you as we did encounter some instances when the Bluetooth connection would drop but hopefully the bugs will be addressed with firmware and software updates in the coming months.